Leadership Inspirations Activities

Group Mandala

Participants will get to know more about each other through different objects of significance

Duration

20-30 minutes

Team Stage

Forming, Norming

Type Of Activity

Bonding Activity

Materials

Each Person Needs One Personal Object Or An Object From Nature

 

SUMMARY

Participants will get to know more about each other through different objects of significance. The group can explore personality, motivation, and values.

 

SET UP

  • Participants in a group select a small object. The object can be anything, from anywhere: e.g., an object of personal significance or collected from the outdoors.
  • Each of the steps should be revealed one by one. This helps to enhance the unknowns of the activity (and therefore, any experienced meaning is largely constructed by participants themselves). Also note, the facilitator should consider whether or not participate in the group – either way can be appropriate or not, depending on the nature of the group and the facilitator.

INSTRUCTIONS

  • Standing in a circle, ask a participant for their hat (or use some other container).
  • Place your object in the hat, and pass the hat on to the next person who does the same.
  • Cast the objects, with some care, some randomness (like rolling dice) (may use casting mat, e.g., a sarong or coat, particularly if using personally significant objects). Try to use the floor rather than a table.
  • Ask people to look at the objects and then take turns sharing how they feel about the place of their object in relation to the other objects in the group.
  • One-by-one then go around in a circle and have each person move his/her object to a new position, explaining to the group why it feels more comfortable for their object to be in this different place.
  • Ask the group to discuss and collectively move/shift their objects into an ideal arrangement.
  • Initially do not ask students to describe the significance of their objects. By the end of the activity, participants respond favorably and more richly to the anticipation of sharing and learning the personal significance associated with the objects. This provided a deep, satisfying sense of closing to the activity.

VARIATIONS

  • Have the large group break into smaller groups for the activity.
  • Have them pick an object that holds a special significance to their group or organization.

SAMPLE DEBRIEFING QUESTIONS

What?
  • What was the goal of this activity?
  • Did your group do well? What could have improved?
  • How did your group make decisions? Was it effective or ineffective?
  • How did your group manage conflict that arose?
So What?

Inclusion and Involvement

  • What does it mean to be inclusive or exclusive?
  • What did we do as a group that was inclusive? That was exclusive/not inclusive?
  • Why is inclusion and involvement important for our group?

Teambuilding

  • When has your group worked well together in the past? When have they not worked well together?
  • When has (something that happened in the activity) happened in the past with your group?
  • What habits or actions make a successful or effective team? What does your group do well as a team? What are your group’s opportunities for growth when working together?
Now What?
  • What does this activity tell you about the strengths of your group? The areas for improvement?
  • What’s one commitment each person can make?
  • What are three lessons the group has learned that they can continue to work on?
  • How can we implement these lessons in our school/organization?
  • What can you do differently moving forward?